SAN FRANCISCO: China may send pandas to the US as a friendship gesture, following a recent meeting between President Xi Jinping with President Joe Biden, Western media reported on Friday.
President Xi Jinping has said that China could send new pandas as envoys of friendship to the US. The White House replying to the gesture said it would be happy to receive the pandas.
National Security Council spokesman John Kirby told journalists that the US would absolutely welcome the bamboo-eating animals. He went to say that the final decision in this regard would be made by President Xi.
China has first sent the animals to the US in 1972, following the then-president Richard Nixon’s visit to the country.
China called back pandas due to strained ties with US
Earlier, China because of the strained ties with the US called back some of the pandas back home.
Three giant pandas at the Smithsonian National Zoo in Washington who were handed over to the US in 2000 were flew back on a cargo plane to China earlier this month.
Xi after a dinner with CEOs in San Francisco said that he was told that American people especially children, were sad when the pandas were called back to China. Xi then said that new pandas would soon be coming back to the US west coast.
He noted that San Diego Zoo and people of California are looking forward to welcome back the pandas.
XI said that China is ready to continue its cooperation with the United States for conservation of pandas.
The last remaining pandas at an Atlanta zoo are due to return to China by late 2024.